FanDuel calls on Florida

Business News

FanDuel, the national fantasy sports website, has sent a “call to action” email to its Florida users, asking them to contact lawmakers in support of their hobby.

With the Big Game just around the corner, we have an important message to share with every Florida fantasy sports player, the email says.

A new bill has been introduced that would update Florida’s laws to recognise what we all know to be true—that fantasy sports are games of skill and should be kept legal for all eligible Floridians to enjoy, it says.

A Senate committee on Wednesday is set to discuss a major gambling overhaul bill (SB 8) that, among other things, would expressly legalise fantasy sports play.

The fact is that current laws have not kept pace with technology, the FanDuel email says. “Unless legislators are willing to deny millions of Floridians the right to play America’s newest national pastime, they must act quickly to update the law by passing legislation that protects your right to play.”

A 2006 federal law banned online gambling but specifically exempted fantasy sports.

In Florida, however, a 1991 opinion by then-Attorney General Bob Butterworth says “operation of a fantasy sports league” violates state gambling law. Such opinions don’t have the force of law, but can be used to persuade judges.

The FanDuel email includes a link to a site where users can send a message to their state legislators to urge them to vote for this year’s bill.

FanDuel and its rival, DraftKings, agreed late last year to merge amid increasing regulatory scrutiny.